Wednesday, August 10, 2011

898 Again Orwell


898  Again Orwell

Orwell was pretty much right when he wrote 1984, he just got the year wrong.  But there remain lessons un-drawn from his book about a culture and government crazily spying on everyone.

The two minute hate.

Orwell’s citizens of “Oceana” are forced to watch a daily film (probably a Blu-Ray or at least a DVD by now) depicting faces of the “enemy,” and to allow themselves to be whipped into a frenzy of loathing.

But between groups like the tea party and the religious right abetted by the 24 hour news cycle, who needs Blu-ray?  And two minutes is hardly enough time.  Make it perpetual.

Obama, Casey Anthony, Muslims (they’re the new Jews,) old folks (they’re the new African Americans,) Democrats (they’re the new Soviet Communists,) the government, Mama Grizzly.  Pick your side and take your pick.  No, it’s not just the right wingers.  But it’s the right wingers who have given new legitimacy to all this.

It’s no longer enough to just dislike someone or some thing.  It’s gotta be hatred.  And not just ordinary hatred.  It has to be “I want to throw a rock through my TV set,” tooth-grinding, frothy-mouthed run-wild-in-the-streets hysterical hatred.

What’s really scary is the potential of the tube and the internet and talk radio to spawn a leader of riots.  We’re pretty close.   Nancy Dis-Grace is one notch down from motivating roving bands of thugs into the streets to “correct” “wrong” jury verdicts.  Until he became too insane even for Fox TV, Glenn Beck was one notch down from sending roving bands of thugs into the streets to eliminate any registered Democrat.  

And heaven help us when the mainstream haters harness the power of rap and hip hop to help move their message along.

These days, two minutes is not enough.  Or it’s too much.







Shrapnel:

--People who find it unacceptable, unseemly or impossible to admit concupiscence for Casey Anthony have found an acceptable outlet for their energies.   Now, long after the trial, it’s disguised as “justice for Caylee” or outrage at a “wrong verdict.”  Nonsense... what you’re seeing and maybe feeling is blood lust hatred.

--Then, in Durham, NC, there’s littering hatred and a shooting death.  It happened about ten one recent night when a visiting high school football team from suburban Pittsburgh went wandering through the parking lot of a strip mall while eating peanuts and dropping the shells as they went, angering another out of towner, a Texan up and east for a funeral, whom police say pulled a gun, killed one of the kids and wounded another.

--According to Google, this blog had as many readers in South Korea last month as it did in the United States, along with a scattering of “hits” in places like Latvia, France, Israel and Ukraine. Can anyone explain this?  Or is it just monkeys typing in search boxes again?


I’m Wes Richards.  My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
Please address comments to wesrichards@gmail.com.
© WJR 2011

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